Types of RNA Processing

There are three main types of RNA processing events: trimming one or both of the ends of the primary transcript to the mature RNA length; removing internal RNA sequences by a process called RNA splicing; and modifying RNA nucleotides either at the ends of an RNA or within the body of the RNA. We will briefly examine each of these and then discuss how they are applied to the various types of cellular RNAs.

Almost all RNAs have extra sequences at one or both ends of the primary transcripts that must be removed. The removal of individual nucleotides from the ends of the RNA strand is carried out by any of several ribonucleases (enzymes that cut RNA), called exoribonucleases. An entire section of RNA sequence can be removed by cleavage in the middle of an RNA strand. The enzymes responsible for the cleavage in this location are called endoribonucleases. Each of these ribonucleases is targeted so that it only cleaves particular RNAs at particular places.

eukaryotes organisms with cells possessing a nucleus prokaryotes single-celled organisms without a nucleus

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